Hello world... uh, again. I'm still here. Still cutting paper, taking custom requests, filling wholesale orders, and still loving that I get to call all of this "my job." While Crafterall the business hasn't slowed down at all since getting off the ground over 14 years ago, Crafterall the blog is, ahem, pretty dusty. Back in 2007, the blog started as a way to keep my friends and family up to date on this crazy idea to start a business, and then in 2012, it was geared to gain more viewers and (hopefully) more buyers.
This is so cool. I was recently approached about contributing a photo for the cover of a new book, and I jumped at the chance to do this. It's paper art meets literary art. This book is being re-released, and to give it a fresh, new look, the publisher chose my slanty, macro photo of the eastern Great Lakes piece to entice folks to give it a read. It's wonderfully fitting since the book is about a journey around each of the three eastern lakes -- Huron, Erie and Ontario. And I think it looks awesome! Check it out!
Here's another new, local Minnesota piece: the lovely Forest Lake. This lake sits above the northeastern corner of the Twin Cities metro area, and is included in the top 100 largest lakes in the state. In my research of the lake, I learned that it is the source of the wee, Sunrise River, and is home to Minnesota's biggest black ash tree. Neat-o! To see more about the new Forest Lake piece, just visit my Etsy shop.
I've recently extolled the beauty and magic of the San Juan Islands here for you. Just south from there is the magnificent Puget Sound -- once a deceptive maze for explorers to find a way inland from the Pacific Ocean, and now a spectacular jumble of bays, fjords, and valleys. The Puget Sound design is now available in the shop in two sizes (8 x 10" and 12 x 12"), and you can click the photos below to take you to their respective listing. The design includes the Seattle and Lake Washington area on the east, to the Port Angeles area on the west on the Olympic Peninsula. And it stretches from the Strait of Juan de Fuca on the north to the state capital, Olympia in the south. In between, it catches most of the major islands in the sound, and the other port cities that call the area their home.
Another of the largest bodies of water in the greater Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area is the lovely set of Prior Lakes. Most folks probably just refer to the entire body of water as Prior Lake, but there really are two lakes: the Upper Lake to the southwest that flows northward into the Lower Lake. Lake chains and rivers that flow northward can throw you for a loop, until you remember that it's all about gravity and topography, and that sometimes, you have to go "up" to go downhill. Maybe it's a metaphor for life's challenges... or maybe it's just the lay of the land. Either way, this lovely, curvy body of water is now available in the shop for you! Click on the photo below to go directly to the listing.
Quick change of topic from my recent artful additions, to bring you a story about our recent canine additions.
If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you know that the only thing I share more about than my artwork is my dogs. However, the last time I blogged here about my dog, was three years ago, in a post about Jack. Our dear Jackie-Boy, our first retired-racing greyhound, our black and white cow-dog, our heart dog, passed away in November of 2012 at the ripe age of 14.
Spend a day or two in downtown Minneapolis, walk the skyway, browse the shops along Nicollet Mall, wrangle the typical weekday traffic... and then head out to the Chain of Lakes area, and you'll see why they are such a coveted part of the metro area. I've had the major waters of the Chain of Lakes in the shop for many years, but I've finally added the last of the group as an individual piece, pretty little Cedar Lake, and it's ready for you in the shop right now. Click on the photo below for more information and the listing to make it yours.
Oh, Man. The San Juan Islands! When I was able to visit this area in the summer of 2013, I made a promise to come back, and a wish to stay longer at some point. My sister-in-law and I took a ferry from Anacortes to Orcas Island, taking in the birds, the salty air, and the countless, green, tree-laden islands all around. We didn't see any whales on our watch, but marvelled at the homes and cabins on many of the islands -- people lived there! If there was any place in the world to be stuck on a bridge less piece of land in the middle of a sea, I'd take any of over 400 islands up here without complaint. And here are many of those islands, in paper form, for you or anyone else you know who's wanted some of this magical place for their own. Click on the photo below to take you to the listing in the shop
While I certainly enjoy every lake I get an opportunity to cut, I relish learning about and rendering lakes that are near to my childhood home in north central Minnesota. Cass Lake is just east of Lake Bemidji, and home to the school where I completed my student teaching. Driving up to Bemidji from the metro area, reaching Cass Lake is the last milestone of the journey.
The Brainerd Lakes area is one of the handful of areas in Minnesota where people from all over flock during the summer for a relaxing cabin weekend, a fishing adventure, or just to escape the confines of city life. At the heart of this part of the state, sits the lovely Gull Lake. Gorgeous shorelines, multiple bays, and mysterious depths make this not only a memorable body of water, but a stunning subject for a layered paper artwork, too. See more information and get your own by clicking the photo below.